Effective phonics instruction is explicit.
Effective phonics instruction is systematic and sequential.

CLIO Lesson’s Letter Sounds series follows the common core of major phonics systems and begins with teaching students the short-vowel sounds. Teaching the short-vowel sounds will allow students to read words soon after they begin blending sounds together.

Note: We focus on the lowercase letters first and introduce capital letters when we get into three-letter blends. It is important for students to understand that each lowercase letter has a capital letter. Post an alphabet wall to expose students to the capital letters. More details on how to build an effective word wall will be posted soon.

Getting Started



CLIO Lesson’s 12 Letter Sounds Learning Videos
Introduction Video Flashcards
1 Teacher Letter Sound Tracker per student
1 Student Letter Sound Tracker per student


Guided Learning

Guided Learning with CLIO Lesson’s Learning Video

Work on phonics at least 15 minutes a day.
Frequency and consistency are crucial to keep the momentum going and build automaticity

  1. Model the new letter sounds for the students. Use the video flashcards (included with subscription) to assist.
    This is an apple.
    What sound do you hear at the beginning of the word aaapple?
    Say a-a-apple.
    Can you hear /a/ at the beginning of the word aaapple?
    Say a-a-apple
    This is an elephant.
    What sound do you hear at the beginning of the word elephant?
    Say e-e-elephant.
    Can you hear /e/ at the beginning of the word eeelephant?
    Say e-e-elephant.
    When students are at the point of reviewing previously learned sounds, chant a-a-apple, e-e-elephant, i-i-iguana, o-o-octopus, u-u-umbrella, and so on.
  2. Tell students the video will display letter flashcards and they should say the letter sound as the letter appears on the screen. Remind them that the sound to be learned is the beginning sound of the image that appears next to the letter. After Segment 1 the video will review previously learned sounds at the beginning and throughout the rest of the video to help students retain the information.
  3. Play the video. The video plays along with an upbeat instrumental to assist with keeping students engaged. You can simply turn the volume down if you decide you do not want to play the music. Continue teaching the letter sounds by adding several new consonants every few days. Drill until all sounds are memorized.
    You can follow the sequence below, however let your students be your pacing guide!
    Only move on when mastery has been achieved.
    Week 1-Short-Vowel Sounds
    Week 2-Add Consonants b,c,d,f
    Week 3-Add Consonants g,h,j,k
    Week 4-Add Consonants l,m,n,p
    Week 5-Add Consonants q,r,s,t
    Week 6-Add Consonants v,w,x,y,z


Replay the video for individual and small groups of students as needed.

Dictation Exercises

“Reading and spelling are two sides of the same thing, and the trouble starts when you start separating the two.”-Rudolf Flesch

Teach your students to write the letters for each sound as they learn new sounds. This will help your students learn to read and spell at the same time.

Always practice writing previously learned letter sounds.

Write the letter that makes the /a/ sound.
Write the letter that makes the /o/ sound.
Write the beginning sound in apple.
Write the beginning sound in iguana.
And so on…


Practice is Key

Letter Sounds Practice
1. Work on phonics at least 15 minutes a day.
2. Post an alphabet wall for student reference.
3. Encourage your student to identify the beginning sounds in words.



Knowledge Check

Check for Understanding

Use the Letter Sound Tracker to monitor student progress. The Tracker is available with a CLIO Lesson subscription.